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Orange awards social prize

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An Egyptian start-up that developed the idea of “click funding” has won the 2015 Orange African Social Venture Prize, presented during the AfricaCom Awards ceremony in Cape Town last week. 

For the fifth year in a row, the Orange Group recognised three innovative projects that could stimulate development in Africa. The prize aims to encourage entrepreneurs as they launch initiatives using technology to meet the needs of people living in Africa.

More than 600 candidates responded to the call for projects, which ran from May to September 2015, reflecting the potential of the telecommunications sector to support development in Africa in fields as diverse as healthcare, agriculture, education and energy. Eleven projects were selected by a panel of judges, consisting of Orange specialists, the media and institutions that promote development. The shortlisted projects were presented on Orange’s pan-African web portal, www.starafrica.com. The three prize-winners received grants of 10,000, 15,000 and 25,000 euros, along with six months of support from Orange experts. The first prize will also be offered a patent registration.

The winning projects:

The first prize was awarded to Bassita (www.bassita.org), an Egyptian start-up that has developed the idea of “click funding”. The platform allows businesses to host their social, cultural or environmental projects and receive donations depending on whether the project reaches its objectives in terms of number of clicks or times shared on social networks.

The socially-responsible start-up upOwa (www.upowa.org) was awarded second prize. The Cameroon-based company has developed an intelligent solar-powered solution that aims to provide electricity to rural areas of Western and Central Africa that have not yet been connected to the national electricity grids.

The third prize was awarded to the Malian company myAgro / N’Ga Sene (www.myagro.org) that has developed a mobile application which enables farmers to buy high-quality seeds and fertilizer, and to benefit from a range of training programs. myAgro is set to play a role in improving agricultural productivity in Africa and facilitating working conditions.

Finally, a “favourite project” was also selected by web users on the StarAfrica portal.

Over 22,000 visitors voted for the Moroccan project Kezakoo (www.kezakoo.com), an e-learning platform that publishes free online educational material (school documents and videos) by allowing members to share their own content with the community.

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Win a Poster Heater with Gadget and Takealot.com

This winter Gadget and Takealot.com are giving away three Poster Heaters, which look like posters but become heaters when you plug them in.

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Three Gadget readers will each win a unit, valued at R550 each. To enter, follow @GadgetZA and @Takealot on Twitter and tell us on the @GadgetZA account how many Watts the heater consumes.

What’s the big deal about these heaters? Many of us are struggling to keep the balance between soaring electricity costs and the need to keep warm this winter.

However, the recently launched Poster Heater by EasyHeat and distributed in South Africa by Takealot.com is not only one of the most cost effective electric heaters currently on the market, it is also easy to setup and use.

As the name indicates, it is a poster similar to one you would hang on a wall. But, plug it in and it turns into a 300 Watt heater. The Poster Heater isn’t designed to heat hallways or large rooms, but rather smaller ones like a bedroom or a baby’s nursery or a dressing room.

It uses radiant heating, which means that it heats up in a couple of minutes and the heat is directed at the objects or people around it, quickly taking the chill out of the air and providing a comfortable ambient temperature.

The other advantage of radiant heating is that it doesn’t dry out the air like infrared or gas heaters. Users also don’t have to worry about their children or pets getting too close to it because, even though it gets hot, it can be touched.

To enter the competition follow the steps below:

Competition entry details:

1. Follow @GadgetZA and @Takealot on Twitter. (We will ONLY be accepting entries via Twitter, so please don’t enter through the comments section of this article.)

2. Tell us on Twitter, via @GadgetZA, mentioning @Takealot in your posting, how many Watts the Poster Heater consumes.

cleardot.gif3. The competition closes on 31 July 2018.

4. Winners will be notified via Twitter on 1 August and Takealot.com will be in touch to organise delivery.

5. The competition is only open to South African residents.

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Happy Emoji Day! Here’s 10 reasons to be cheerful

First created by Shigetaka Kurita in 1999, the emoji has become a huge part of everyday communication. Whether you love them or hate them, flying dollar bills, applauding hands and rolling eyes are here to stay.

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Scientist suggest that the use of emojis will help us gain the same satisfaction from digital interactions as we enjoy from personal contact.

Almost two decades later, and we have over 2600 unique emojis to perfectly express what we feel, thank you Mr Kurita! Join HMD, the home of Nokia phones as we celebrate World Emoji Day on the 17th of July with these interesting emoji facts:

The most popular emoji used is “Person Shrugging”

1.       The Nokia 3310 was chosen as one of the first 3 “National” emojis for Finland… it represents unbreakable!

2.       South Africa’s favourite emoji is the “Kiss and wink”… how sweet SA!

3.       French is the only language where a ‘smiley’ does not top the list for its use

4.       On average, over 60 billion emojis are sent on Facebook every day

5.       For the first time ever, the Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year was a pictograph! The “Face with Tears of Joy” was crowned word of the year in 2015

6.       According to Emojipedia, some of the most requested emoji’s include afro, a bagel and hands making a heart

7.       To include all races, a diversity pack was released in 2017

8.       It has become so trendy that the Museum of Modern Art displays the original emoji collection on canvas

9.       In 2009, Herman Melville’s classic Moby Dick was completely translated into emoji’s

 

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